The survival knife may just be your future best friend. Having the right survival knife at your side can draw the line between just barely surviving and actually thriving in a survival situation. Making the right choice amongst the different kinds of knives is an important one. This decision should be based on what you think you are going to need and what kinds of situations you are going to use them in.
While the debate between fixed-blade survival knives versus folding-blade survival knives rages on, some survival experts believe that foldable knives could possibly do more harm than good. Due to the folding hinge, the knife could fold while in use and end up cutting you, or it could come apart at the hinge in the middle of extreme use. This is the reason why a lot of hunting knives are fixed, because the process of hunting and killing an animal requires a significant force that may be too much for folding-type survival knives.
Along with the proper grip, the length of the blade itself must also be taken into consideration. While some people think that the longer the blade, the better the knife, survival guides and experts clearly say otherwise. A machete may be useful for hacking at wild greenery when trailblazing, and it could probably kill your dinner for you in fewer strokes, but aside from those crude actions, there really isn't much else that a machete is good for. When it comes to all-around use, the best survival knives are those that have a blade of a perfect size. While "just right" may be subjective to some, it has been found that a blade of 4-8 inches is more than enough to be able to get around without having to switch knives at all.
Serration on the blade of the knife can also be quite useful. Serration is basically used for slicing, seeing as the object that is being sliced is meeting the blade at many different angles. A straight blade is more useful for general chopping action. While a lot of people do not consider serration as a must for the best survival knives, it is widely available, as many of the survival knives produced today already come with serration. The only downside to a serrated blade is that it is hard or next to impossible to sharpen in the wild, unless you have with you a special sharpening tool for serrated blades. You'll have to weight that con against the many benefits serration provides in order to decide which is best for you.
In the case of survival knives as multi-tools to be used as survival gear, most of the time it is worth a bit of extra weight. If you are going camping and you have a lot of gear anyway, the multi-tool will certainly come in handy. But if you are going to climb a mountain and are going to have to keep all of your gear on your person, you are going to want to keep the weight to a minimum so as not to bog yourself down and to prolong your strength and maximize your endurance.
The kind of survival knife that you buy will really depend on the types of things that you do in the outdoors. Only one thing is true for everyone: no matter what type it is, make sure you have one before you venture out into the great outdoors.